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This blog is where you'll find a more extensive view of my work, some wedding tips, and you'll get to know me on a more personal level. Enjoy!

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Jessica

  Hi!  I'm Jessica, the main communicator for Five Fourteen Photography. Here is where I love to share our client's stories! As you browse, you will find complete wedding galleries, some great wedding tips, and you'll get to know my family and I on a more personal level. Enjoy!

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June 8, 2019

What to Wear to an Engagement Session | Outfit Inspiration & Engagement Session Prep

What to Wear to an Engagement Session

The Engagement Session is a VITAL part of your Wedding Photography Experience! It is an opportunity for you get in front of my (Jessica’s) camera long before your wedding day and in turn, to get comfortable with your photography. This way when we both show up on your wedding day, neither of you are nervous, stiff, or unsure of what to do (well, at least you’re not nervous about your photography that is)! You and your fiancé will already be experts in front of the lens.

The FIRST outfit should be CASUAL

I like to encourage our couples to have TWO complete looks (outfits). The FIRST look should be your more casual look. This would be your more everyday wear, what you would wear to go out to dinner with the In-Law’s perhaps. We will get some great shots and get you warmed up to being photographed in these outfits. Even though this is casual, you still want to dress it up a little. Leave the sneakers at home, please!

The SECOND look should be DRESSY

The SECOND look should be the dressiest look; even if you don’t dress up often, you should for your E-Session!  My rule of thumb when brides ask me “What should I wear?” is: Wear what you would wear if you were attending your friend’s wedding and her venue is an upscale country club.  Seriously, I say that!  It works, too!

The DRESSY look is the most important! This is the look that will make your images look high-end and luxury! The dressier the better! We will also likely shoot during the Golden Hour in this look for dreamy sunset glow!  If you decide on only having one outfit for your engagement session, it should follow the rules of the DRESSY outfit. 

  • Ladies:  Envision Monte and Lori from Say Yes To The Dress Atlanta saying, “Do you want to get jacked up?“!  The answer is always “YES“!  Go all out!
    • Great dress options are cocktail dresses, black tie dresses, a cute summer dress, or even long flowing maxi skirts.
    • Pair your dressy look with wedges or heels and jewelry accessories to photograph you beautifully! If you’re not that into dresses, a nice blouse with coordinating pants can be dressy too!
    • Lulu’s is my favorite recommendation! They have gorgeous dresses and offer free returns! This means you can order multiple sizes (you do have to pay upfront) and try them on and return what you don’t keep at no cost to you! They even cover the shipping (if you send it back within a window).  I have personally purchased from Lulu’s and I’ve photographed many brides-to-be in some of their fabulous dresses!
    • If you haven’t yet checked out Rent the Runway, this is a GREAT way to get a luxury designer dress at a small cost and without worrying if you’ll ever wear it again!  They even send you two sizes of your choice and a free second designer option to insure you’re satisfied with your dress!  Now that’s a great service!
  • Men:  If you own a Blazer, Sport Coat, or Suit – wear it!
    • Do not shy away from a vest, dress slacks, a pressed collared button-down shirt, and bow-tie even!  Please, leave the tennis shoes and Polo shirts at home.

Tips For Your Engagement Session Outfits:

  • Iron, Steam, & Iron again!!! I can not overstress this enough! It’s merely impossible to edit wrinkles out of an outfit. Please also pack your change of clothes in a way that they will not wrinkle in transport.
  • Don’t over match! Color Coordinate!
  • Accessorize! Utilize colorful accessories to tie your looks together!
  • Be Brave, be Bold! Do not be afraid of color or patterns!
  • Leave the sneakers at home, even if your casual look entails blue jeans.
  • Even though you’re dressing up, make sure you’re comfortable!
    • If we’re shooting in a park, remember that heels will sink in the ground (try wedges/chunky heels).
  • Lulu’s is my favorite recommendation! They have gorgeous dresses and offer free returns! This means you can order multiple sizes (you do have to pay up front) and try them on and return at no cost to you! They even cover the shipping (if you send it back within a window).  I have personally purchased from Lulu’s and I’ve photographed many bride-to-be’s in some of their fabulous dresses!
  • If you haven’t yet checked out Rent the Runway, this is a GREAT way to get a luxury designer dress at a small cost and without worrying if you’ll ever wear it again!  They even send you two sizes of your choice and a free second designer option to insure you’re satisfied with your dress!  Now that’s a great service!

Important Reminders

  • Don’t forget to be on time! If you’re 15 minutes late, the sun doesn’t wait on you. We are working with natural light, as long as it is available.
  • Relax! It is our job to make sure you’re comfortable and that you have fun!

Hair & Make Up

I can’t stress this enough ladies!  Your photography is an INVESTMENT that will last you a lifetime!  A professional hairstyle as simple as a wash and set (“blow-out”) with some curls will outshine just about anything you can style on your own – not to mention it can last 2-3 days!

Even if you don’t typically wear a lot of make up, you’d be surprised how flawless professional make up will make your skin glow and your eyes pop!  Your engagement session is also a great time to trial run your make-up artist, so essentially you’re checking off a to-do item off your list and taking full advantage of it with beautiful images! That’s what I call a WIN! 🙂

Some of my favorite examples:

what to wear engagement session

Heather’s off the shoulder long flowing maxi dress is a PERFECT example of what to wear to an engagement session! Also, Andrew is looking good in his fitted navy suit!

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Ashlyn and Avery came dressed to impress in his classic navy suit and her white summer dress.

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I will never forget when Allycia was sending me pictures from the dressing room as she was shopping for her e-session dress! That’s right, I will totally help you shop and have so much fun doing it, too 🙂 This champagne sequin dress was probably my favorite dress of the year!

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Notice Jessie’s white off the shoulder lace dress and Matt’s dress blazer? Hello gorgeous! 🙂

what to wear to an engagement session

I loved Tyler’s tan linen blazer and Traci’s pink dress with long sheer skirt was perfect for the beautiful summer day it was!

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Recognize this couple?!! We took advantage of the first snow of 2017 to create this image. I slipped on an old bridesmaid dress that was in my closet with a pashmina and Rick put his favorite suit on to create this luxury look!!!

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If there were a grade for “What to Wear to an Engagement Session”, these two would Ace the test!!!

what to wear to an engagement session

Nothing says engagement better than a white flowing dress for her and a tie and blazer for him!!!

Yes! Yes! Yes! If you are in our Armed Forces (THANK YOU!!!) please bring your uniform! Look how handsome Carlos is standing next to his beautiful bride to be, Chelsi!!!

If you already have your color palette picked out, feel free to match your engagement photos! Chelsia’s deep purple dress is her favorite color and matches her wedding theme – which means this is perfect for their Save the Dates 🙂

engagment outfits

LOVE Phylicia and Austin’s CASUAL look!!! Don’t be afraid to tune up your casual look!

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I love how Megan and Galen chose bold colors for their spring engagement session!

what to wear to an engagement session

Riley’s flowing summer dress is a dream to photograph!

Can you believe this is their CASUAL LOOK?! Yes, don’t be afraid to make your casual look, dressed up as well!!!

Notice how this CASUAL LOOK is still dressed up? The more dressier your options are, the more high-end your images will look 🙂

 

Thanks for reading, check out our category on Bridal Tips such as :  Tips for Traveling with your Dress (this covers bridesmaid dresses, too)!

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